When we saw on the Events list that Frank Camorra the man of MoVida himself, was going to teach not 1 but 2 classes.. we had to brave the weather and line up for it!
As the owner and head chef of MoVida, who in 2009 won the Chef of the Year in The Age Good Food Guide and a 2 hatter this year. It was an opportunity that could not be missed.
When asked, “How many dishes are you planning on showcasing today Frank?”, he answered “6 if time allows it!”
So you know you’re in for a really LONG post.. but I’ll make it worth it, as it’s 6 recipe’s!
This first tapas, called Gilda, is the easiest to assemble. It’s just preparation and getting the right ingredients on a toothpick. Simple and no fuss =)
Ingredients are 4 peeled smoked tomatoes, 330g can of palm hearts, 12 white pickled anchovies, 1 handful of flat leaf parsley, and 1 small can of Spanish olives stuffed with anchovies.
This serves 12.
Seed the tomatoes and cut into quarters lengtheways and quarter through the middle. Cut the palm hearts into 15mm length.
Drain marinated white anchovies and place 5 whole fresh parsley (he didn’t count… just grabbed a bunch) and a few slivers of sliced onion from the anchovy marinade on the fillet then loop the fish over to form a horseshoe shape.
Skewer each ingredient onto a tooth pick and serve.
The next dish is called Gambas ala Sidra (Prawns cooked in terracotta with Asturian apple cider), and you are strongly recommended to get some terracotta cazuellitas.
Start by soaking your terrocatta casuellita in cold water (min 24 hrs before use). Drain and dry.
Place on low flame and heat it up until very hot.
Carefully add olive oil, parsley and garlic (1/2 clove chopped). Once the garlic starts to sizzle, add the prawns. NOTE: Do NOT burn the garlic!
Season the prawns and cook for just under 2 mins on each side to seal them and add colour.
Deglaze the cazuellita with cider and pour enough until it is just under the top of the prawns. Finish cooking by allowing the cider to reduce by a third.
Serve immediately while the prawns are sizzling and the cider is bubbling…
Next up, Asadillo! (Roasted capsicum and tomato salad with cumin and sherry vinegar)
Ingredients are as follows:
12 red capsicums, 2 large brown onions (unpeeled), 2 garlic bulbs (whole), olive oil, 10 tomatoes (peeled, seeded and cut into wedges), flat-leaf parsley, 100 ml extra virgin olive oil, 150ml sherry vinegar, 1 tablespoon freshly ground cumin, several pinches of sea salt flakees.
Preheat the oven to 180degreesc, place all the vegetables (and roots, if you want to get picky!), onto the roasting tray sprinkle with salt and drizzle with olive oil and roast for 40 mins.
When the capsicum are just cool enough to handle, remove and reserve the skins and seeds. Reserve the cooking juices. Break up the capsicum flesh intro broad strips and put in a separate bowl.
Cut off the tops of the garlic and squeeze out the now paste-like interior.
Add the tomatoes and onions (cut out the skins)
Measure (of course Frank didn’t need to!)… 100ml of the reserved cooking juices (strained) and add to the mixing bowl.
Squeeze some olive oil into it.
Roughly chop up the flat leaf parsley.
Serve immediately or refrigerate. If refrigerating, allow the salad to reach room temperature before serving.
It’s a super long post and if you’re still with me… WELL DONE!!!
Sopa Castellana (Five min bread and garlic soup with saffron) – a dish which Frank says, he would not serve to diners in his restaurant but as a gathering meal for his kitchen/floor staff before they begin. As it needs to have that rowdy, family, sharing environment to really enjoy it.
Frank explains that in the past, the Spaniards were very poor and would make an entire meal out of soup. Utilising stale bread in soups to feed the whole family. Nothing ever went to waste, and hence why their dishes are always so packed with flavour!
As soon as it is a deep gold, stop the frying by slowly adding chicken broth (1.6 litres) and bring to the boil and simmer for a minute. Taste for seasoning and add salt if neccesary.
Use bread that has been dried in a warm over for 10-15mins. Add the bread into the hot soup and allow to swell while simmering for just a minute.
Serve in bowls straight from the pot itself to add to that rustic feel!
I lie, it’s in a pot, because Frank couldn’t find bowls and wasn’t provided with enough from the events team… *tsk* *tsk*
Number 5! Chocos Con Garbanzos (Braised cuttlefish with chickpeas)
Add 600g of chickpeas (cleaned)…
2 Chorizo,1 garlic (whole), 1 onion, bay leaves (crushed)…
6 Tomatoes, paprika
fino sherry (200ml), extra virgin olive oil (50ml)
Add 700ml of water
Add 300g of clean cuttlefish
…and cook in a pressure cooker (medium-low heat for 45 minutes)
It should look like this!
To make the picada, Frank cheated and took out all the vegetables, squeezed (those that needed their skins remove) into a mixing bowl, added toasted saffron threads, fresh mind, fresh parsley, peppercorns and blended it (recipe calls for mortar and pestle)
Add the picada back into the pot and stir through. Serve hot!
Last but not least, DESSERT!
Apparently, Spaniards aren’t big on their desserts… but they do make good pastries…
Frank decided to show us the makings of Pestinos (Andulacoan olive oil and sherry pastries)
1kg flour, 1 tsp bicarb, 1tsp salt, 2tsp ground cloves, 1 cup olive oil, 2 tsp fennel seeds, 1 cup fino sherry, sugar, ground cinnamon, oil for frying.
Heat olive oil in a frying pan with fennel seeds. Whilst that is heating up, in a metal bowl, place flour, bicarb, salt and cloves
Form a well. Into the well, add the hot oil and fennel seeds. (Speed counts here)
Immediately, add the sherry. Allow to bubble.
Mix through with a wooden spoon and allow to rest for 10 mins.
Roll out thinly on a well floured surface. Cut into 8cm by 1cm strips using a crinkle cut pastry cutter.
Deep fry until golden brown.
Allow to cool slightly before sprinkling with a sugar and cinnamon mixture.
There you have it my friends (who have made it through all the way to the bottom of the page)… 6 tapas dishes… perfect for a dinner party!